Question about Western Digital My Book Essential 1TB External USB 2.0 Hard Drive

3 Answers

I was using my hard drive with 2 partitions. 1 partition of about 500 GB was used as a Time Machine Backup for my MacBook Pro. The other half of the drive was used as a general data dump for documents, photos, and videos. I dropped data into this side mostly from Mac OS 10.5 but also from the Windows XP SP2 partition of my Intel-based Mac. After trying to connect my drive to my usb network router so that it could be connected to my computer on a network, the drive would not load. It was not recognized on the network and then when I tried to reconnect it directly to the computer, the Mac OS keeps saying the drive can't be read and gives me the option to initialize it. I didn't initialize because I didn't want to loose the data already on it. I tried to use DiskDoctor software to recover from what I thought was a formatting issue but that did not work. I checked some blogs where people claimed to use Mac DiskUtility and partition using GUID setup. When I tried that the Disk Utility claimed there was an input/output error. I'm not sure if the drive can be solved with software or if it is physically damaged. About a week before I got all these problems the drive fell off a table. The case was offset but I just snapped it back in place and it continued to work without problems. I don't know how to get my computer to recognize it without erasing it and loosing all the data it has.

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  • sirianous May 03, 2010

    Is it okay to open the outer case? I opened an internal hard drive once only to find out that the slightest speck of dust can ruin it.

  • sirianous May 06, 2010

    I opened the external hard drive case and connected the SATA drive directly to my computer using Bytec Drive Mate. It still said the drive was unreadable and if I wanted to initialize it. I opened disk utility and first tried to repartition the drive. It repartitioned but when I reloaded the drive I got the same error message and whether I wanted to initialize it. I said yes but that just automatically opened disk utility again. I tried first aid but it was all grayed out. I tried repartition but that didn't solve the problem. I then tried to erase and start over. It erases but then goes into partitioning automatically at which point the blue progress bar freezes and nothing gets done. Also I should mention that the 1TB drive keeps displaying as 2TB in disk utility

  • sirianous May 07, 2010

    No, the drive is out the case and I removed their usb adaptor and attached my own bytecc drive mate adaptor directly to the SATA hard drive. I know my drive mate works because I have other hard drives that successfully connect. I think the problem is with the hard drive itself. Outside of the external case I can hear the drive better and it doesn't sound like a healthy drive. It makes clicks and whirls different than usual.

  • sirianous May 10, 2010

    Thanks for your help. I will wait for the replacement drive and then try to recover software to the new drive.


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I received the same type of ehdd at my repair bay three days back. I tried it with linux 98 and even dos but to no avail then I concluded that the problem is hardware failure. I replaced the usb cable still it didn't worked. At last I de-soldered the connector on ehdd and replaced with a new one and it worked perfectly. Hence, I recommend that you try it with linux mount command and if it's not detected over there then you are required to change the connector.

Posted on May 02, 2010

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  • Aruna Singh
    Aruna Singh May 03, 2010

    External HDDs are entirely different than Internal ones. Internals were vacuum packed double shielded shock proof screw tight and many more things but external ones are entirely different . They are push-fit no questions of vacuums the only caution one has to take is the data/power cables inside it they are delicate. No scratchings on the plastic thing inside it. If you can wait upto tomorrow (means 24 hrs from now or may be 22) I can take a pic of my open E HDD and point out the correct things on those pics.

  • Aruna Singh
    Aruna Singh May 05, 2010

    Sorry for the delay. Here is what all necessary for you to know.

  • Aruna Singh
    Aruna Singh May 09, 2010

    Now you have reached to a place where you know as a tech neither I can do anything nor you can fix it. Thats the same driver which I told you as an internal drive vacum packed and all that dust free area things. It's not so that such HDDs cannot be repaired. They can be repaired but the cost of the repair is going to exceed the cost of HDD itself. Thats why no one opts for repair and such units are known as BER (Beyond economical repair).


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If the data is very crucial and you cannot afford to loose it you can go to places live "geek squad"or "comp usa" or "drive savers" coz you would not want to take any adventure witht he data your self , if it not as important than try to connect the hdd first with the windows os computer then mac and see what you can recover infact you can also use any data recovery software too,
secondly the hdd are usually very sensitive as they have got disks running inside the box so if it fell down and you have took out the data ,then format it and see if the problem coms again if it does then buy a new hdd .

Posted on May 07, 2010

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To clarify when the drive is showing as a 2 TB drive is the drive still inside the external case.

It sounds like the controller on the drive or the case is bad.


Posted on May 07, 2010

  • Will Hartford
    Will Hartford May 09, 2010


    Unfortunately if the drive is making clicking noises then something happened the drive its self when it got knocked over.

    If you have critical data on the drive you might be able to recover the data. You might check with your local computer store to see if they have a program that will run the recovery. You might also do a search for one your self. The programs run normally around $300 to $500 thats why I recommended you check with your local store. I normally charge around $100 because it will try but my test rig for 24 hours and I need to look in on the drive. Also to run the recovery you have to have free drive space equal to the size of the drive because you will need a place to store the covered data. Note even if you do not use the whole drive some old deleted files my get recovered.

    Also note there is recovery services out there that will pull your platters out of your drive in a clean room to recover your data but those start around $1000. So if the data is not critical data I would try just the software recovery. But if you want to do this you need to stop messing with the drive as the more your do the less likely you will get any data recovered.

    Let me know if you have any more problems or questions



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